So the Christmas season is upon us. We all tend to get into the giving mood during the holidays, especially when it comes to the less fortunate. I want to mention two different ways that you may never have considered, neither of which has to cost you a dime, but a small portion of your time is needed.
First, you’ve got some really nice coats, clothes, even shoes, in your closet that you have outgrown, decided it’s not “your style” or for whatever reason, you don’t wear those anymore. Sheriff Cullen Talton’s deputies started a drive, called Coats for Kids, a few years ago. It’s grown into a wonderful program with great results and no “overhead” costs. All you have to do is donate those “like new” items to the Coats for Kids program. Gather those goodies up and drop them off at a collection box. You’ll make someone’s Christmas a whole lot brighter. If you don’t have any “like new” stuff, and you feel the desire to help out the cause, they accept cash and checks too. Send the check to Houston County Sheriff, 202 Carl Vinson Parkway, Warner Robins, GA 31088. Put “Coats” on the memo line and it will go to that program. Everything will be available for distribution on Christmas Eve when the deputies, in conjunction with Toys for Tots, visit the areas of our county that need your help. Collection boxes are springing up all over, but Target Department Store and Satterfield & Dempsey Jewelers have boxes now.
The other gift, one that gives you way more than you’ll ever give, is to make the commitment to read to a primary or elementary school class every month next year. You’re busy? Try beating my schedule, but the most important thing that I do every month is to read to my favorite two classes at CB Watson Primary School. Mrs. Roberts and Mrs. Justice have awesome kids who just soak up being read to. The librarians make it easy and will pick the books for you, or you can bring your own. It takes maybe 30 minutes out of your day but it is a gift that can’t be replaced. I’ve obtained permission from judges to be late to court so that I could do my monthly reading, so chances are you can figure out a time every month that you can read to kids. Contact a school and just do it. Better yet, pick a school where they need to see you more than your kid’s school.
Once you’ve started reading, considering adopting that class. Do a pizza party. Bring them pictures of your travels. Make a donation to the teachers for supplies. Why not put a little bit of money where your time is going. There are a lot of elementary and primary school classes in this county, but I figure there a 100 adults per class that ought to be doing more than they are doing. All I am asking is for 1% to step up and make a difference.
It’s Christmas and it is time to give. Both of the ideas above are just a small sample of the needs of our community. If you’ve got ideas of other worthwhile programs, post them on my Facebook page where this column is posted or send a letter to the editor. Let’s make a difference in 2017.